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Biomedicine in museums

Histories of global health — including that of Proust and asthma

By February 6, 2008No Comments

Since 2005, the World Health Organization (WHO) has run a series of seminars at their headquarters in Geneva on global health history, covering topics like child health, epidemic diseases, and primary health care. To mark its 60th anniversary WHO is now organizing (in co-operation with the Wellcome Centre for the History of Medicine at UCL) an intensified series of ten seminars throughout 2008 (read the full programme here).

If I could select one of the events only, I think I would choose Mark Jackson’s talk on Thursday 29 May, titled ‘Marcel Proust and the global history of asthma’. Not only is Proust the most famous asthma patient in cultural history — the title also promises exciting views on particular vs. global, literary vs. historical, and individual vs. social perspectives on the history of late 20th century health issues.

Thomas Söderqvist

Author Thomas Söderqvist

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